Weekly News Brief
THE GOOD, THE BAD, THE UGLY
Amazon Fashion is the proverbial ugly child of the fashion family. Seldom talked about but relied upon as a smaller breadwinner for the behemoth, traditional brands have regarded the sell-all e-commerce giant with a measure of distaste. Yet this negativity has not impeded Amazon's ambitions to become the new fashion destination site. Young emerging brands have seen their best sales on Amazon due to its advertising and overarching customer reach. Amazon also invested and launched seven in-house clothing lines in February. Is Amazon's takeover inevitable? Racked reports extensively on the challenges faced by Amazon Fashion as a work-in-progress.
Our favorite quote from the article? “These days, there are two ways to describe retail: a sh*t show, and Amazon.” Aptly put, Professor Galloway.
FAST AND FURIOUS
The business cases of fast fashion giants Inditex and H&M have been consistently expounded upon as the disruptors of the industry with their ability to capture runway trends quickly through supply chain optimization. But what happens when the disrupters are being shown up? Quartz reports on how Zara and H&M are losing the speed game, falling behind pure e-commerce players like Asos and Boohoo. The need for speed is real, and looks like it's going to be a battle royale for the top spot.
However, we don't think retail and e-commerce success is simply about speed. One important factor that remains relatively unimplemented is personalization. Check our new how-to article on 3 ways to personalize with the customer in mind.
Spring break is no longer cool. It has been unanimously replaced by festival season for college students who look forward to strutting fringe, feathers and denim on the grounds of Coachella. With seemingly undying hype around music festivals, retailers (Forever21, H&M, Bloomingdale's) have regularly made it a point to capitalize on the festival season through editorials to drive sales.
Can Festival Season now be counted among the ranks of Back-to-School and Christmas in the fashion calendar?
New York City's prestigious Fifth Ave is losing some of its dearest tenants. Ralph Lauren has announced plans to shut down its flagship Polo store on this high street by April 15. Despite a higher turnover rate, landlords remain certain about the status and attractiveness of Fifth Ave as a shopping destination.
If you're feeling downtrodden about the prospects of the current retail climate, read our recent article on how to survive this retail apocalypse.
☀️ THIS WEEK'S BRIGHT SPOT ☀️
All you environmentalists out there should sit up and take note. Researchers in Sweden have done the nearly impossible task conducting and comparing the analyses of our clothing's life cycles. Not only have they identified the main source of environmental pollution for the fashion industry (production accounts for 70%), they were able to compare the environmental effects of different textiles. Their next project is to use this data to develop a tool that manufacturers can use to reduce their carbon footprint by mid-2017. Score one for the environment!
The best news, though? Washing and drying only accounts for 3% of pollution. Now we won't feel so bad for using the dryer!